Penguins beat Columbus, 3-1


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Evgeni Malkin broke a 1-1 tie early in the third period and goalie Marc-Andre Fleury stopped 32 of 33 shots as the Penguins defeated Columbus, 3-1, at the Consol Energy Center tonight.

Michael Ratchuk gave the Blue Jackets a 1-0 lead at 12:03 of the first period when he backhanded a shot over Fleury from near the right dot.

Fleury appeared to stumble and lose his balance a second or two before Ratchuk shot.

Neither team scored again until 16:48 of the second, when Pascal Dupuis of the Penguins snapped in a shot from inside the left circle to tie the game.

Malkin put his team in front to stay at 2:47 of the third, when he slid the puck between his legs to defenseman Andrew Hutchinson, then steered a return pass from Hutchinson past Columbus goalie Steve Mason.

Arron Asham added an insurance goal by punching in a rebound at 17:17, just seconds after Mason had robbed him from point-blank range, and Malkin gave the capacity crowd of 18,087 a final thrill by landing a series of punches during a brief, one-sided fight with Blue Jackets winger Rick Nash.

The Penguins, 3-0 in exhibition play, will face Chicago Tuesday night at the CEC.


For more hockey, read Penguins Plus: Dave Molinari and Shelly Anderson . Dave Molinari can be reached at dmolinari@post-gazette.com .


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